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Three questions on Seattle with Sounder at Heart

Our friends at Sounders at Heart help preview tonight’s game with Seattle.

MLS: Los Angeles FC at Seattle Sounders FC Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

As FC Dallas gets ready for tonight’s MLS Cup Playoff game against the Seattle Sounders, we have brought in Mark Kastner from fellow SBN blog Sounder at Heart to help us preview tonight’s big game.

[Note: You’ll be able to read out answers to their question later today on their site.]

BDS: Seattle continues to get a lot out of their big three up front. What has been the difference with them this season that has earned two of them a nod for league MVP?

SaH: I can hardly complain about how good Seattle’s attack was last year, for very obvious reasons. But the difference this year is that the team is much, much more balanced. 2019’s attack had relied heavily on left back Brad Smith bombing forward, Jordan Morris cutting inside, and Nico Lodeiro causing overloads on the left. This year has the addition of Joao Paulo as a deeper play maker and more conservative fullback play. That provides the foundation for Morris, Lodeiro, and Raul Ruidiaz to work their magic at the business end of the pitch.

BDS: How is Seattle looking in the injury department going into Tuesday’s game? Are there any big concerns?

SaH: It looks like the only player that’ll be out is Gustav Svensson. He missed the final game of the season because of international duty and hasn’t played a minute in the playoffs yet because he hasn’t been medically cleared to play. This is about as healthy the Sounders have been all season!

BDS: How has this year been for Seattle? Has the team met expectations so far or is there more to come out of this group that fans expect?

SaH: The Sounders are a good soccer team and it’s been (mostly) fun to watch them every couple days. It’s been a nice reprieve from, well, [gestures wildly at the world]. The last month or so of the regular season was a slog, but I gather that was true for every fan base. There were expectations coming into 2020 that this could be the best Sounders team we’ve ever had, and while I think elements of that have been shown on the pitch at times, it is hard to not wonder what could’ve happened if we had a normal year. So, I think much of this playoff run is about maintaining that level of expectation so that if things ever get back to normal in 2021 then the fans and the team can experience that together.